24 Mar 2020
Like everyone, my life is currently dominated by background noise of uncertainty and fear. It’s completely daunting.
I’ve just spent 30 minutes reading through the applications that have been successful so far to our Coronavirus Community Fund. And my heart is lifted; and I want to shine a spotlight on all the things that aren’t making it into my social media feed.
– Gangs of people hand delivering mailshots to homes offering support.
– ‘Good morning’ services re-organising so that they can keep regularly phone isolated people from home rather than from their offices – when the list of demand is ‘growing by the hour’
– Local communities co-ordinating what the GP, the pharmacist, the store are doing to provide the best support to the vulnerable
– A community freezer!
– A flood of new volunteers offering to help
– “already we’ve set up a local helpline”
– Organised food donations and distribution around a rural area
– And my favourite – a group working out how to help those who are isolated do arts and crafts activities at home, and then collecting those crafts and displaying them on social media.
And that’s just the first batch. The team are working insanely hard to get applications assessed and payments out quickly.
This is the front line and the first wave of community response. There’s lots of questions about what happens next week and next month; about how we preserve the fabric of society with businesses and charities under threat. But if the creativity that has been unleashed in the last few days is anything to go by, there is hope.